32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A, 08/11/2020

This week the readings have a message of longing, waiting, and staying awake. It reminds me that I once visited my primary medical doctor for some blood tests, and while the tests were in the process, I waited anxiously for my blood results to know my health condition. Similarly, we all have occasions in our lives when we have anxiously waited to know or see our desired, longed for, and awaited results. This kind of waiting is in anxiety, and it can lead to a lack of peace and joy. Today’s message on staying awake as we wait with longing is different from any other form of waiting. It is staying awake to love, longing for God, our joy, hope, and peace.

 In the first reading, the lady Wisdom stays awake at the door. She waits for someone who’s longing to meet her and get peace.  The Psalmist expresses his longing for God to see his glory and power and be joyful. He stays awake throughout the night. St. Paul, in the second reading, encourages the Thessalonians, and now, he is doing the same to us, to encourage one another that our hope may not grow dim in waiting. Even the dead have hope of rising from death. And in the Gospel, inviting his disciples to stay awake, Jesus threw next to their lives the metaphor of a wedding ceremony, and the ten maidens, waiting for the bridegroom to arrive soon. When he delayed, they all got weary and could no longer stay awake. Long after their weary waiting and longing, the bridegroom came. The five prudent girls entered the wedding hall with the bridegroom, while the other five imprudent girls were locked out.

 As we draw nearer advent and Christmas season in our liturgical calendar, and without forgetting our present struggles and challenges with Covid19 and other difficulties, there is wisdom in persevering and staying awake in faith, love, and hope. Wisdom is ready to comfort, strengthen, and console us. Wisdom is Love that longs to embrace us and make us stay burning with the flame of love and faith in our hearts. Even if we may be tired of waiting for our desired change and peace to happen in our lives, families, and communities, let us keep the flame of love burning in our hearts towards everyone, to give hope to our world and make God present. We do not know the day or hour of his coming, and all we can do is to keep the flame of love burning, transforming the world around us with it until he comes and finds us awake. So, STAY AWAKE!

Christian Action This Week: Light up a Lamp/Candle,  and together as a family or as an individual, in silent meditation in the presence of candlelight, pay attention to the presence of God in your life in every activity. Then, go out the next day, and inspire hope to someone who is about to despair or has given up already.

Joy and Peace.

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